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A monster and robber in Greek fable, half maiden, half snake, the daughter of Chrysaor and Callirrhoe, or, according to another story, of Tartarus and Gaaea. Her home was the country of the Arimi in Cilicia, where she brought forth to Typhoeus a number of monsters, Cerberus Chimaera, Sphinx, Scylla, the serpent of Lerna, the Nemean lion, etc. (See TYPHOEUS She was surprised in her sleep and slain by Argos. (See ARGOS, 1.)
 
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According to Hesiod [Theog. 869], the youngest son of Gaea by Tartarus; a giant of enormous strength, with one hundred snake-heads, eyes darting fire, and various voices, which sometimes sounded like the voice of the gods, sometimes like the lowing of a bull or the roaring of a lion, or like the howl of a dog, and sometimes like a shrill whistle. He was the symbol of the fire and smoke in the interior of the earth, and of their destructive forces. Hence he was also the father of devastating hurricanes. By Echidna he was the father of the dogs Orthos and Cerberus, and the Lernaean hydra [the Chimaera, the lion of Nemea, the eagle of Prometheus, and the dragon of the Hesperides]. He contended with Zeus for the throne of the lower world, but after some severe fighting was hurled to the ground by lightning, and thrown into Tartarus. In Homer he lies beneath the earth, in the land of the Arimi [Il. ii 783], and Zeus assails that region with his thunderbolts. According to another account Aetna was hurled upon him, and out of it he sends forth streams of flame [Aeschylus, Prometheus 370, Septem contra Thebas 493]. He was afterwards identified with the Egyptian god Set, the god of the sirocco, of death, of blight, of the eclipse of sun and moon, and of the barren sea, the author of all evil, and the murderer of his brother Osiris (q.v.).
 
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